Why Hybrid Vehicles Need a Specialized Mechanic


Why Hybrid Vehicles Need a Specialized Mechanic
Hybrid vehicles do not belong to the future anymore, they are already here. As of now, there are many hybrids on the road and their numbers will only increase in time. However, some mechanics have a strong dislike toward these vehicles and don’t want to work on them. The repair and maintenance work, involved in a hybrid or electric car, is different than that of a regular automobile. That’s why hybrid owners have to be careful when looking for the right mechanic for the job.
What Makes a Hybrid Different?
In the internal combustion of a non-hybrid vehicle, when you turn off the ignition, the vehicle is off. Yes, the battery still has a connection, but the engine of the vehicle isn’t going to power up mid-service. You’ll have to unhook the battery to be able to work on it or the related systems. Apart from that, there’s no real danger in the vehicle’s power/electrical operation.
A hybrid car has a motive battery that is way more powerful than a standard car battery. Moreover, it is designed to kick on by itself, when needed, during vehicle operation. For mechanics, all of this can be very dangerous. Here are some of the biggest issues:
  1. The engine of the hybrid may still interact with the battery’s use, even after you’ve taken out the key from the ignition. If a mechanic is not aware of this and does not disconnect all power and batteries beforehand, they could cause some serious damage to the car.
  2. The electrical systems of hybrids are high-voltage and usually require the use of thick, insulated gloves to ensure a safer repair. There’s a high risk of electrical shock when working on these vehicle, therefore, it’s a must to have a trained professional attending to the needs of your hybrid car.
The Maintenance is Often the Same
In general, there’s no special maintenance needed for a hybrid vehicle. It’s recommended by most manufacturers that hybrid owners should stick to dealership service since there’s no independent training available for any hybrid makes or models, as of yet. However, you have more options available than just the dealership service. Most routine maintenance and repair services can still be performed on hybrid vehicles by ASE-certified mechanics. The only exceptions, which require advanced training, include the drive train, brake system, and electrical system.
What Should You Do?
Your best option is to rely on an independent automotive shop that hasexperience in working with hybrids since training on these specific vehicles is still limited. Don’t hesitate to ask a mechanic about their experience with hybrid cars and what kind of certifications regarding to general vehicle repair, does the shop have.
Bear in mind that at the moment, there’s no clear certification or licensing for hybrid repair and maintenance. If a repair shop claims to possess such type of licensing, be sure that they’re lying to you. For any type of repair, it’s important to have ASE-certified mechanics, but you should not forget that this certification is general and all independent auto shops should have it. Lastly, make sure the shop guarantees all of the work they do on your hybrid.

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